Money and Work

As a senior editor for AARP Media, Carole Fleck covers personal finance, the economy, older worker, retirement planning and other news affecting people 50-plus.

Kids’ Best Financial Adviser: Grandma or Grandpa

Grandparents apparently hold more sway over their grandchildren’s saving habits than they know. According to a survey by TIAA-CREF, a New York-based financial services firm, most young adults (73 percent) say their grandparents do influence their money decisions and more than half call their elders excellent savers. Yet few grandparents capitalize on their standing: Only 8 percent say they’ve had or are likely to have a conversation with their grandchildren about money. >> Sign up for the AARP Money newsletter Among …

Your New Retirement Number: $58,000

En español | Financial experts seem to speculate endlessly about boomers’ projected lifestyle in retirement based on their savings and spending patterns. Now a new survey that polled recent retirees about their standard of living has found that, for some, you don’t need a lot of money each year to retire comfortably and live happily. According to the survey by Baltimore-based investment firm T. Rowe Price, recent retirees report living on 66 percent of their pre-retirement income on average – $58,000 …

Need a Job? This Search Tool May Help

Looking for work? A new interactive mapping tool helps job seekers pinpoint the cities, counties and states with the best opportunities for their particular skills. Users plug in their occupation, and a free, color-coded U.S. map from Glassdoor, a job search website, highlights the areas with the most job openings for their line of work. A nurse who clicks on the map, for example, will find that Texas has more than 40,000 openings. Zoom in further and the map will show that Dallas alone …

Most Medicare Recipients Have Modest Incomes, Kaiser Reports

If you’ve ever wondered about the finances of people receiving federally funded Medicare benefits – are they wealthy, poor or somewhere in between? – a new chart provides some clues. This interactive infographic, released by the Kaiser Family Foundation, takes into account assets, income, age and more as it delivers a financial picture of the estimated 52.4 million people on Medicare. The graphic also includes projected data for 2030, so you can see how current recipients measure up against future beneficiaries. >> Sign up for the AARP Money …

GE Capital Ordered to Pay $225 Million to Consumers

GE Capital Retail Bank must shell out an estimated $225 million to consumers to settle government claims that it discriminated against Hispanic credit card customers and persuaded other card holders to buy add-on products that promised to cancel part of their debt if they became disabled, lost a job or suffered from another hardship, the Justice Department announced Thursday. “We will continue to take action against marketing tactics that trick consumers into buying credit card products they do not want or cannot use,” …

Who’s Tapping Their 401(k) to Pay Off Debt?

Too many workers are using their 401(k) savings plan as a piggy bank, tapping it way before retirement for reasons such as to pay off debt, remodel their home or take a vacation they couldn’t otherwise afford. New research from the financial services company TIAA-CREF finds that one-third of 1,000 Americans surveyed in May have taken out a loan from their retirement savings plan. And 44 percent say they now regret it. The survey looked at what situations caused workers to tap those …